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Feb 20, 2017
Qatar office to be shut if Taliban stay away from talks: Ghani
Feb 19, 2017 - 15:24
The Presidential Palace said Ghani made the remarks at a meeting with the Qatari foreign minister on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference on Saturday.
In a statement from his office, the president said he discussed with Mohammad Bin Abdul Rahman Al Thani the Afghan peace process and Taliban’s political office in Qatar.
It was important for Taliban to shun the insurgency, join the peace process and avoid wasting the available opportunity, the statement quoted him as saying.
“If the Taliban don’t bring positive changes to their policy and continue violence until the next solar year, they would be sanctioned and their Qatar office shut,” the president warned.
Ghani claimed investigations into a recent Kandahar attack showed the Taliban were involved. Such acts proved the fighters had no regard for civilian lives or respect for diplomats from friendly countries, he added.
Twelve people including five UAE diplomats, two MPs and the deputy governor for Kandahar were killed. At least 18 others -- the governor and the UAE ambassador included-- were injured in the attack on December 31.
A few days back, Ambassador Juma Al Kaabi also succumbed to the injuries he sustained in the attack.
The president said peace was a priority for the Afghan government but he accused the Taliban of choosing to fight on.
Minister Thani said there was no justification for violence and his country remained committed to continued cooperation with Afghanistan in restoring peace.
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